Tag Archives: Family

One Moment Can Change So Many Lives

This is a post that’s very difficult to write and I would very much appreciate your help.

Just over twenty-five years ago, one moment changed four people’s lives. In turn, it also changed eight others – our parents. “On the first day of kindergarten” (as we like to say) four little ladies met and are still incredibly close. Throughout our twenty-five year friendship, our families have all become conjoined. The door is always open to each other in any of our homes. One big ole family. I think it’s safe to say that we always felt like each others parents took us all under their wings in this tiny Vermont town. We are all pretty lucky.

Berkshire, Longway Fundraiser

As we all know, life isn’t always bells and whistles. There’s up’s and down’s that help us to really put life in perspective.

In 2011, one of our mom’s was diagnosed with colon cancer. Since then, she has undergone three chemotherapy treatments and is now on her fourth. Her first two treatments were successful and she did go into remission for some time. Most recently, the cancer has returned and spread.

During this same time, my same friend’s dad began having problems with his legs and is barely able to walk. It was questionable as to if he would be able to walk his daughter down the aisle at her wedding two months ago. He has had one stint put into one leg and is awaiting to have a bypass done in the other.

These two people have always opened their door to me (and numerous others) and have treated me as a member of their family. They are generous, hold endless fun and have a great sense of humor. Never asking for anything in return.

Berkshire, Longway Fundraiser

Now more than ever help is needed and you too have the opportunity in making a difference. Their daughter has set up a fundraiser to help raise funds to assist in their care and treatment.

It just takes that little glimmer of light to make the biggest difference in someone’s life.

Please consider making a donation in assisting with their care. Sometimes a small donation is the best way to say we care and provide that ounce of hope on a dark day.

In Addition:
For any donation $90+, I will provide an hour photo session free for you and your family (including a disk with the high-resolution, edited photographs). Just mention the donation in the request.

During this upcoming holiday season, please cherish the moments with you and your loved ones and help this incredible family have a few more moments of their own.

Berkshire, Longway Fundraiser

Thank you and please consider donating today!

Standing On Top of Vermont (Part III)

(Continuation of Standing on Top of Vermont – Part I, Part II)

152 …The trail. Rocks. Boulders. I sat on my butt and slid down one. I got the “I’m petrified of heights” shakes when having to climb over gaps in the rocks. I lost a water bottle along the way.

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View from the top… where we were headed to get down…

Low and behold – we made it to the Gondola.

191 194 Can you hear the angels rejoicing?! I had a way down! I was exhausted (and hungry).

196 We walk in to where the seats were spinning and told to we needed a ticket from the gift shop. I’m not even kidding. $19 each for a one way ticket down.

“#$%&@*%%&*#%*” went thru my mind. I’m exhausted, hungry and feeling very, very old.

“Are you serious? No, thank you.” Came out of my mouth.

Side Note: Dear Stowe Resort. This is a photo of a random wire on your property thrown into the woods. Please clean this before winter falls upon us. It’s environmentally irresponsible. (Near Switchback – easy access to Long Trail nearby.) Thank you.

063 (2) Green Mountain Man and I began our walk down the ski slopes. Down a black diamond trail. This was seriously the funniest part of our hike. The man not only runs up the mountain but he also runs down. Then falls. Multiple times. Everytime I buckle down laughing and trying not to pee. Karma, I end up falling and continually laughing. Oy vey. It’s the point in the day when you realize you’ve had enough.

200 At one point, we see a road and my brother says “We’re getting farther from the truck. We gotta cut thru the woods. It’s shorter.” Exhausted because I don’t think I have a choice, I follow suit. Branches, tree trunks, brooks, rocks, I twist my ankle, a twig stabs the same ankle. I feel old, like 90 years old. My thighs hurts, both knees, my toes are squished in the tips of my shoes, I somehow manage to laugh thru most of it but at one point I distinctively remember looking at him with the “evil glare” thinking why are you doing this to me again?! I guess he wasn’t worried about it because he later said that his wife would’ve been a whole lot more pissed than I ever was on this trip. He wasn’t worried. Here we are walking thru the woods, trying to find the trail, once again. All of a sudden we hear a rustle to our left. A dog. It might as well been a moose by the way we both jumped. Calamity Jane! Needless to say, we found the trail, found the start of the trail (which was not where we started) and got back to the truck.

156 We did it! We hiked Vermont’s highest peak. Although it was a real pain, struggle and terrifying at times but the view from the top was beyond anything I can put into words. This is my home.

Next time, we need a lunch packed but since we hit “the big one” it should all be easy from here on out, right? Plus we have unforgettable sibling memories. That’s pretty special.

158 Did I mention that there was a toll road to the top of the mountain? I veto’d that idea because I thought that would’ve been “cheating”. Needless to say, the toll road creator – was one smart person.

Standing on Top of Vermont (Part II)

(I apologize for the amount of photos in this post. The view was so beautiful, I need to share. Hope you don’t mind!)

077 (2)

(Continuation from Part I)…Why haven’t I ever heard of people getting to this point on Mount Mansfield?! Maybe because as soon as you overcome it, you’re exhausted, tired, anxious, hungry, nervous from the heights and ready to just soak in the view from the top. At least that’s what it was in my case (and it may have helped if I had pancakes with maple syrup for breakfast). I saw people go up with dogs (somehow) and they seemed fine. Maybe it was just me or maybe they had a teleportation device..  Again, “who came up with this idea anyway?!”

Low and behold (and also because I’m writing this), we made it to the top! Do I have any pictures of the rocks on the way up? Sure as hell don’t! I’ve never shook hiking. Ruffles my stomach just thinking about the steepness of the rocks mixed with the heights and my great imagination. My fear of heights is going no where. Doesn’t’ matter – we made it to the top!

105 The summit. Holy beautiful. The view, oh the view is awesome! Vermont, Lake Champlain, Canada, New Hampshire. You can see EVERYTHING! (The couple that we saw at the breaking point… both of them made it up as well!)

076 (2) 075 (2) 074 (2) 073 (2) 072 (2) Check out this video from the summit (or almost… we started walking down and I forgot so it’s close enough!)

The summit is also the best spot to people watch….

  • Mr. Green Mountain Man and I are sitting at the top and here we see Mr. Extreme Mountain Runner coming from the other direction. Jogging away like it isn’t anything. He literally jogs by us, reaches the highest point and then jogs away. We were both speechless. Mr. Extreme Mountain Runner…. May I please jump on your back so you can carry me down?!
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I have no idea who these people are but I really hope they come across this photo! I love it!

  • There was a guy and gal at the top helping to direct folks. Gal is talking to a random visitor who just hiked up and apparently they lived in the same area at some point. Convo goes something like this:

Gal: “You should come visit sometime!”
Random Guy: “Definitely, it was great meeting you.”
Gal: “Yea, bring some friends. Stay the night. You and your friends. Or just you.”
Hello proposition. Way to be bold lady!

  • A fairly good sized group of Middlebury College kids came up the mountain right after we did. They were smart and prepared. Did I mention all I had to eat that morning was a meal bar and we didn’t’ bring lunch? Soon, they all settled down for lunch, pulling out bags of bagels, cheese, pretzels. I kid you not, I literally asked myself how fast I thought I could run if I grabbed one of those bagels and took off in the opposite direction. My response to myself was “not far”. That would’ve been a sight to see.

Meanwhile, I was taking lots of pictures!

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Looking out towards the west – Lake Champlain and New York (far side of the lake) and the Adirondacks.

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View to the South. Hail Green Mountain State!

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More views looking west down into the valley.

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Sibiling love. He has put up with so much of me over the years. I couldn’t love him more!

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He’s so photogenic, that brother of mine!
Standing on top of the world!

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My signature move… the muscles!
“I came. I conquered. I’m tired.”

144 081 (2) After we got done taking photos and checking things out with the bino’s (because we were never going up there again)… we decided to take an alternate route down. Obviously. There were a couple other ways down, one called “Profanity Way”… surprising considering I thought I just got done hiking that one. Then, we came upon one that went to the Gondola at Stowe Resort. This should be fine… we’ll hike down some rocks. I mean, it CAN’T possibly be any worse than what we just came up and then taken the Gondola down.  Easy as pie, right?!… (Stay tuned for part III)

187 These mountains will always be my home! I love this state like no other!